Tuesday, July 6, 2010

10 Little Aliens

Would you believe that a film made in Second Life was considered to be part of a children's show? Chantal made “10 Little Aliens” for a competition in which the best short film gets to be shown on Sesame Street. But it almost didn't get considered.

Chatting with Chantal, she told me the contest itself was held by Aniboom.com, who told them Sesame Street was looking for new and original characters. Existing ones were off limits in the contest. Chantal then contacted her team which made everything in the machinima, the avatars, the music, the lyrics, etc.

She went on to say after she submitted the machinima, she got a reply saying the film was disqualified, told that game imagery couldn’t be used in the contest and they considered Second Life a game. Chantal’s first response was to send a copy of the terms of service, and insisted it was filmed in her own area. She was turned down again. Finally, Chantal sent them a third message, thanking them for calling it game design material, not realizing she was so good, it could be mistaken for it. Aniboom then accepted the machinima, though stated it could still be disqualified if it won.

Chantal stated that Aniboom had asked her before to enter contest, even though they had stated machinima wasn’t allowed. “Don’t worry about it,” she was told then. She found it odd that the first time they wanted her in even though the rules were against her media. And now she wanted in, and they didn’t want her. Second Life didn’t stand by it’s machinima, Chantal commented, even though others such as Blizzard of World of Warcraft does. But groups in Second Life do pay attention, such as Metanomics doing a show on the subject.

She went on to tell me some of the aliens were some of Pooky Amsterdam's staff behind those little avatars, including Pooky herself. Kat2 Kit had appeared on the set of "The 1st Question" in one of the alien avies. The avatars were their original design, and Chantal has them up for sale in her sim for very little cash, all funds going to the making of her next film.

Unfortunately, Chantal did not win the contest. "10 Little Aliens" came in 44th place out of the hundreds of short films submitted.

No doubt she'll try again when she has the chance.

Bixyl Shuftan

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